One of the reasons why software projects suffer from high failure rate is that employees working on the project are often reluctant to blow the whistle informing the upper-level management about the failing status of the project. In this study, we examine the impacts of organizational commitment, interpersonal closeness, and Confucian ethics on the employees’ whistle-blowing intentions in the Eastern culture context. Based on data collected from 144 Chinese MBA students, we found that the relationship with the organization and that with the wrongdoer both significantly affect the employees’ willingness to blow the whistle. With respect to the influence of Confucian ethics, we found that the employee’s ethical disposition on loyalty between sovereign and subject positively affects the whistleblowing willingness, and the employee’s ethical disposition on trust between friends positively moderates the relationship between closeness with the wrongdoer and the whistle-blowing willingness.


Whistle-blowing, IT project management, organizational commitment, interpersonal closeness, Confucian ethics


ISBN: [978-1-86435-644-1]; Full paper